Does the name Sam Farha mean anything to you? If it does, you’re probably a fan of poker. Farha is a rather famous professional poker player. He is most know, however, for a hand he lost.

In 2003 Farha was on the verge of elimination from the World Series of Poker Texas Hold ‘Em Main Event … the one you typically see on ESPN. In fact the 2003 tournament, and Sam Farha’s role in it, helped make televised Texas Hold ‘Em tournaments a ratings boon for the network.

Farha found himself down early after losing a big hand and almost dropped out voluntarily. Friends encouraged him to keep playing. He was a fairly accomplished player, mind you. And he did. And he won hand after hand.

Farha reached the final table and meticulously worked his hands until only one man stood between him and his first-ever World Series of Poker title. That one man was a newcomer to the sport. The odds were certainly stacked in Farha’s favor.

But that one man was observant. He watched Farha for hours on that final table, looking for a tell. That is what poker players call some action a player takes or a reaction they have that indicates they either have a great hand. Or they have crap. 

A poker tell is normally subconscious. The player “telling” as it were, doesn’t even perceive they’re giving away a hint as to what’s in their hand. And to be more precise, it’s not that they give away what’s in their hand, but how good their hand is. 

You see, the art of playing poker is the art of keeping your opponents guessing. Do you have a good hand when you place a big bet, so they should fold? Or are you bluffing, so they should call or raise to put the pressure back on you to stay in and not lose any money. 

The newcomer standing between Farha and his first World Series of Poker bracelet was Chris Moneymaker. Hell of a name for a poker player, right? Well, it was a hell of a case of foreshadowing, too. Moneymaker studied Farha for hours playing at that final table and noticed he did something different when he was bluffing versus when he had a strong hand.

He tapped his cigarette on the table. 

At a crucial point in the match, Farha went all-in with a pair of jacks. While that sounds like a strong hand, this is Texas Hold ‘Em, which uses the best five-card hand of seven cards. And going all-in means you’re so confident you’re going to win the hand, you’re going all or nothing. If someone calls and you lose, you’re out of the tournament. 

Farha was bluffing to intimidate the rookie Moneymaker and chip away at the wagers he’d already bet in that hand. If Moneymaker folded, Farha would be that much closer to winning.

But he tapped his cigarette. Moneymaker called. He had two pair. And they survived the final turn of the card to make the unknown accountant from Tennessee, the 2003 World Series of Poker Main Event Champion. 

The prize that Farha saw fly away because Moneymaker spotted his tell? $2.5 million dollars.

Did you know that influencers and content creators have tells too? I shared them in a LinkedIn Post a couple of weeks ago, but the ideas were so useful to many, I wanted to make sure you heard them too. Today on Winfluence, I’ll share the five tells that reveal insights about an influencer that throw up red flags and often make me choose someone different. 

Today’s episode is brought to you by Zencastr and Basecamp. I’m excited to tell you more about them, because I use them both. All the interviews I record for this show are captured with Zencastr. I’ve used it for years to capture high-quality audio over the web. It does high-quality video, too.

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The Winfluence theme music is “One More Look” featuring Jacquire King and Stephan Sharp by The K Club found on Facebook Sound Collection.


Jason Falls at Content Marketing World

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The Five Tells FINAL Transcript

[00:00:00] Jason: On this episode of Winfluence. In negotiations, they say the person who says the number first loses. When a creator starts out with how much is in it for me, they lose. This priority on their side, means they’re in it for themselves and not the customer, you. There’s a difference between being an influencer and actually influencing. I’m Jason Falls, and in this podcast, we explore the people, companies, campaigns, and stories that illustrate that difference. Welcome to winfluence the influence marketing podcast.

Hello again, friends. Thanks for listening to Winfluence the influence marketing podcast. Does the name? Sam Farha mean anything to you? If it does. You’re probably a fan of poker. Farha is a rather famous professional poker player. He is most known, however, for a hand, he lost. In 2003, Farha was on the verge of elimination from the world series of poker, Texas Holdem main event.

The one you typically see on ESPN, in fact, the 2003 tournament and Sam Farha’s role in it helped make televised, Texas Holdem tournaments, a ratings boom for the network. Farha found himself down early after losing a big hand and almost dropped out of the tournament, voluntaily. Friends encouraged him to keep playing.

He was a fairly accomplished player, mind you, and he did. And he won hand after hand. Farha reached the final table and meticulously worked his hands until only one man stood between him and his first ever world series of poker title. That one man was a newcomer to the sport and the tournament. The odds were certainly stacked in Farha’s favor, but that one man was observant.

He watched Farha for hours on that final table, looking for a tell. That is what poker players call some action, a player takes or reaction they have that indicates they either have a great hand or they have crap. A poker tell is normally subconscious. The player telling as it were, doesn’t even perceive their giving away a hint as to what’s in their hand.

And to be more precise, it’s not that they give away what’s in their hand, but just how good their hand is. You see the art of playing poker is the art of keeping your opponents guessing. Do you have a good hand when you place a big bet? So they should fold or are you bluffing? So they should call or raise to put the pressure back on you to stay in and not lose your money.

The newcomer standing between Farha and his first world series of poker bracelet was Chris moneymaker. Hell of a name for a poker player, right? Well, it was a hell of a case of foreshadowing too. Moneymaker studied Farha for hours playing at that final table and noticed he did something different when he was bluffing, versus, when he had a strong hand. He tapped his cigarette on the table. At a crucial point in the match, Farha went all in with a pair of jacks. While that sounds like a strong hand, this is Texas Holden, which uses the best five card hand out of seven total cards and going all in means you’re so confident you’re gonna win the hand, you’re going all or nothing. If someone calls and you lose you’re out of the tournament. Farha was bluffing to intimidate the rookie moneymaker and chip away at the wagers. He’d already bet. In that hand, if moneymaker folded, Farha would be that much closer to winning, but Farha tapped his cigarette on the table.

Moneymaker called he had two pair and they survived the final turn of the card to make the unknown accountant from Tennessee, the 2003 world series of poker main event champion. The prize that Farha saw fly away because moneymaker spotted his tell $2.5 million. Did you know that influencers and content creators have tells too?

I shared them in a LinkedIn post a couple of weeks ago, but the ideas were so useful to many, I wanted to make sure you heard them too. Today on influencer I’ll share the five tells that reveal insights about an influencer that throw up red flags and often make me choose someone different. That’s coming up on winfluence.

Today’s episode is a commentary and we don’t have a guest interview like we normally do, but one of our show sponsors makes those interview episodes possible. Quite literally, not just because they’re sponsoring the show. Those interviews are made possible by Zencaster. That is professional quality, audio and video recording software I have used for years now.

Zencaster builds itself as an all in one podcast production suite that gives you studio quality, audio and video without needing the technical knowhow, and that is absolutely true. Here’s why I really love Zencaster. It records each guest locally. On their computer, the audio and or video file is saved on their computer.

Zencaster then uploads the crystal clear audio and video right into a cloud folder, the Zencaster suite. So you have high quality raw materials to work with. Your recording is awesome because it’s on your machine. Well, theirs is two because it’s saved on their machine with local settings and then uploaded to the cloud. So you can get to.

Stop recording one track in zoom and other softwares do it the professional way. Like we do here on winfluence. As a member of the winfluence community, you get 30% off a pro account. There’s also a free trial, so you can test it before you commit. Just go to zen.ai/winfluence that’s Z E n.ai/winfluence.

Take your podcast recordings, video, and audio to the next level. Sound good, just like me and our guests. Zen.ai/wininfluence. And if you’re wondering how I keep all my work organized for this podcast and all the influence marketing strategies I’m working on for clients out there. Well, that’s easy base camp.

I’ve been using it for project management and team communications for as long as it’s been around, which is about 18 years. Base camp is all about simplicity. It’s designed to give you and your team, the tools you need to get work done. Messages to dos file storage, chat calendar, and more. Bring all in one project management to your business, there’s a 30 day free trial and you don’t need a credit card to try it.

What are you waiting for? Go to jason.online/basecamp. That’s jason.online/basecamp. Use the project management software they write about in books and stuff, it’s great, serious. Just like poker players, influencers have tells. I’ll explain next on Winfluence

The number one predictor of the success of your influence marketing efforts is choosing the right creator to partner with. I say that after almost 30 years of doing this. Yes. News alerts influence marketing isn’t new, especially when you stop looking at it as Instagrammers and Tik Tokers. Leveraging third parties to communicate a message to their audience on behalf of your brand is the definition of media relations.

Some of us have been doing this a long time. The right influencer or creator or journalist has always been the linchpin. Those that succeed as influencer marketing strategists normally have figured out the art and science of finding the right creators for the task at hand. Sure it would be simple if you could just find the influencer in your category with the most followers or engagement rate and be done with it.

But what if the quality or tone of their content isn’t aligned with the brand? What if they have good engagement numbers, but don’t engage with the fans themselves, which renders the engagement rates, kind of a false positive. There are hundreds of factors that go into choosing the right influencer or content creator for your next campaign.

Dozens could be right for you, but how do you get to the more right ones? That’s where looking for tells comes into play. Like Chris moneymaker, you want to be alert and observe. How do the creators communicate with you? What do they say? What questions do they ask? Here are five tells I look for when selecting an influencer that reveal insights about them. That typically make me move on to the next one.

First of all, they don’t respond to your inquiry in a timely fashion. Regardless of how much fun social media can be influence and influence marketing is a business. These creators are presumably in the business of creating content and partnering with brands.

If the email or message sits in their inbox for more than 48 hours, or they don’t respond to more than two requests, you probably don’t want them to. Any content creator who is hard to get ahold of is gonna be hard to work with, move on.

The next tell their first question is about budget. In negotiations, they say the person who says the number first loses when a creator starts out with how much is in it.

For me, they lose. This priority on their side, means they’re in it for themselves and not the customer, you. These types typically wind up being problematic and demanding and deliver far less than those focused on helping the brands they work with.

Another tell they don’t ask about the. Similar to the money first approach. If they don’t have a grasp on why they’re creating the content in the first place, they’re not gonna deliver the KPIs you’re looking for. Sadly, a lot of creators have a mindset of I’m gonna create my content. I’ll work your brand in. They should have the approach of how can I create really great content that helps point my audience, where you want them to go. It’s a different approach and it’s not subtle.

Next on the tells to watch for, they wait for your creative direction while it’s fair to expect the brand, to come to the table with a concept or ideas on how the creator might approach a campaign or execution. If the influencer is more reactive than proactive in formulating ideas in the early conversations you have, then they’re just checking your boxes and dialing it in to get paid.

You want a creator who often on the first phone call says, Ooh, what if we did this? If they wait for you to make suggestions, take a pass.

The last of my tells, they don’t ask for the product. We live in an age where consumers demand genuineness. Yes, I know the word is ingenuity, but that word doesn’t easily connect to our social media concept of being genuine as easily, so sue me, grammar geeks. How can a creator deliver an honest endorsement or recommendation of your product if they don’t use it? Yes, you should be bringing your product or service to the table for them to experience, so their opinion is informed, but if they don’t even ask for it, consider that a red flag.

I’m sure there are others, but these five are the big ones I look for and believe me, I do not hesitate to just end the conversation as soon as I see one. As sure I’m polite, as long as they’re not playing the ego card, but the winning hand is mine. Because there are thousands of creators out there eager to work with and work hard for brands. Tolerating the red flags and hoping they’ll turn out okay is seldom a formula for success.

What red flags have you seen in dealing with creators? I’d love to hear your tells and maybe which ones you didn’t catch that you wish you had. Pop me an email to [email protected] I may share your examples on a future episode. In anticipation that I may, why not invite a few of your friends and colleagues to listen to the show?

It’s a handy podcast for those who want to know more about influence, influence marketing, and how it can help your business. I mean, after today, when you’re pitching influencers, you’re gonna think about poker share this episode or a link to Winfluencepod.com with someone who might enjoy the show, tell ’em you listen, and they should too, or drop influence rating or review on your favorite podcast app, we are on all of them.

Don’t forget to make plans to join me in Cleveland for content marketing world, that is September 13th through the 16th, 2022. I’ll be talking more deeply about influencer marketing and how influencers can help fuel your content. Go to contentmarketingworld.com if you use Falls100, you’ll get $100 off the ticket price.

That’s pretty awesome, right? Speaking of awesome, you can help make a future episode of winfluence awesome. Ask your question about influence or influence marketing that you want my answer to, or take on. Send an email to [email protected] If you’re feeling adventurous, record a voice memo on your phone and email me that file.

I’ll let you ask the question right here on the show using that recording. Winfluence is a production of Falls and partners. The technical production is by podcasting360.com. Winfluence airs along the Marketing Podcast Network. Thanks for listening folks, let’s talk again soon on winfluence.

Winfluence, the influence marketing podcast is an audio companion to my book, Winfluence, reframing influencer marketing to ignite your brand. Get your copy online wininfluencebook.com. While you’re there, sign up for the latest ideas about influence marketing delivered in my periodic newsletter, or book me to speak to your company or organization about influence marketing.

And if you need help with your influence marketing strategy, drop me in line at [email protected] If you, or someone, you know, is an influencer, a brand manager that uses influence marketing, or one of the many amazing people working in the influence marketing services world. And they would make a good guest for the show, email me at [email protected] Our theme music is One More Look by the K club and Grammy award-winning producer Jacquire King. Thanks for listening, and remember, when it’s not about the person, but about results, it’s winfluence.

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